November 28, 2022 1 Comment
by Victoria Watkins
The 251 Varsity Jacket is fully lined, and has knit cuffs, neckband, and waistband. The pattern actually has instructions for knitting your own cuffs and bands, which you can see in the image above. This jacket is also perfect for adding embellishments to - letters, embroidery, pins, trim. You can add the embroidery before or after sewing the lining, but just keep everything aligned well if adding after lining.
In this post, I am going to provide some suggestions for lining fabrics and ribbing. You can read my fabric suggestions for the 251 Varsity Jacket here. Since the lining and ribbing of a jacket can be a statement in itself, I decided to dedicate this second post to these suggestions. Here we will be looking at some ideas for both the lining of the retro Varsity Jacket sewing pattern as well as where to find ribbed/knitted trim for this jacket.
The inside of a jacket is the perfect spot for a soft, smooth texture. Dharma Trading has a variety of lovely silks in numerous colors. You could choose to line your jacket with something bold like this affordable royal blue silk habotai, or you could pick a color that is more neutral to match the outside of your jacket.
This teal cotton/silk blend from Hart's looks like it would be luxurious to slip into on a cold morning. Sew it into an orange, yellow, or gold jacket shell for a beautiful contrast!
I always think it's so smart when I see a fun patterned lining in sewing. This red and black polyester houndstooth fabric from Mood can be a fun little secret that you get to show off when hanging your varsity jacket from the back of your chair or a coat rack.
In addition to lining considerations, you also need to make decisions about the trim on your varsity jacket. If you're feeling bold, you might choose to hand knit the cuffs, waistband, and collar of your jacket. In that case, I recommend any of the wool yarns on knitpicks.com that get you to the weight and gauge you need. However, for anyone who is not handy with a set of knitting needles, you're going to need to find some manufactured rib fabric.
Ribbing fabric is fairly easy to come by, but to find the best results, you can search for things using terms like "ribbing", "athletic rib knit fabric", or "cuff rib fabric". There are a variety of sources, Ebay and Etsy are a good place to search.
When you're choosing a rib fabric, be sure to note how wide it is. The yardage given is for the cuffs and waistband cut with the fabric folded, and when I ordered ribbing for our sample jacket, I accidentally ordered too little. Many of the sport rib knits available are wide enough to cut one piece of the cuffs, waistband, and collar from, but be sure you have enough to cut all you need.